An exciting new clinical trial published in The Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine has revealed that an effective natural alternative to the exceedingly popular pharmaceutical painkiller ibuprofen exists for the treatment of knee osteoarthritis (OA), and it is a familiar kitchen spice known to be far superior both in safety and the number of side benefits it confers to any drug in the non-steroidal anti-inflammatory (NSAID) drug class.
Effectiveness of Turmeric Versus Ibuprofen
In the clinical trial published in The Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine, 109 patients with arthritis of the knee were randomly divided into two groups. One group received 800 mg of ibuprofen, while the other group received 2,000 mg of turmeric. The interventions were provided in divided doses every day for six weeks. Researchers evaluated the pain experienced by the participants during level walking and going up a flight of stairs as well as assessed knee function through noting the time spent in accomplishing the two activities.
Turmeric Is Much Safer Than Ibuprofen
WebMD reports that numerous adverse effects are associated with ibuprofen, some of them quite severe, such as heart attack and stroke. The most common effects are stomach pain, rash, dizziness, heartburn and nausea. In addition, the publication lists 14 infrequent side effects and 84 rare adverse effects, many of which are serious, such as kidney failure and fatal bleeding from the stomach.
On the other hand, according to WebMD, turmeric is likely safe for most people unless it is taken in very high amounts (more than 3,000 mg/day). It normally does not cause side effects, but some people have experienced stomach upset, dizziness and diarrhea. It is not recommended for patients with gall bladder disease, gastrointestinal reflux disease or those who are anticipating surgery within two weeks.
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